Lovers… often speak of their love for each other to one another.
Friends… rarely speak of the friendship to one another, instead tend to accept it as a “given” and operate in it when together.
Lovers… often speak both physically and in mental perception face-to-face, absorbed in each other.
Friends… side-by-side, absorbed in some common interest, goal or philosophy.
Eros love is (healthily) between two, and only two.
Friendship can increase in its enjoyment by the addition of two, three or more so long as the interest, goal or philosophy is somewhat the same as a common bond.
Friendship is born from “companionship”, the discovery of common interest between acquaintances.
Companionship/acquaintances are not necessarily Friendships.
Lovers seek for privacy.
Friends pull from the herd in becoming friends but would appreciate a 3rd, 4th or 5th party on the same terms.
Unity among friends is inward, unity among companions/acquaintances is outward.
Two friends unite in a goal forward. One who wants a friend and only a friend, without a common goal for growth, will be frustrated. Friendship is about something specific.
Friendship between two of the opposite sex will often lead to Eros love, unless there is no attraction or Eros love is already promised by one or both elsewhere. (marriage, engagement or courtship already in progress).
Friendship does not demand services, but will accept or perform them on an accidental or as-needed basis with a desire to return to the subject of unity that drew them together. “Don’t mention it.”, is heard among friends because we’d just as soon not have needing or giving a part of the friendship.
Friendship makes use of information only as it is needed, casually. Friendship does not have prerequisites of attraction, class, marital status, age, etc. Like sovereign princes gathered together, it is mutually respectful and courteous.
Where Eros love has bodily nakedness/openness, Friendship bares open naked personalities. You know your lover by looking into their eyes and heart.
You know your friends by reading, arguing, praying, playing, speaking, etc. with them. Friendship humbles us in that we are so fortunate to have it. It tends to make good men better and bad men worse. (mutual focus and growth on the common element.) Pride and exclusiveness of others to the extreme are the greatest danger to any healthy friendship.